Evelyn Adams Nursing Theory: An In-Depth Analysis

Evelyn Adams Nursing Theory: An In-Depth Analysis

Evelyn Adams Nursing Theory of Goal Attainment is highly influential and well-respected. It provides a comprehensive framework for understanding the nursing process and guides nursing practice in helping patients achieve their goals. 

This theory has been widely adopted and applied in various healthcare settings and has profoundly impacted the nursing profession. 

Broader than a theory, a conceptual model specifies nursing’s focus of inquiry and may thus lead to the development of theories that will prove useful to nurses and other health professionals. 

Adam believes that a theory is useful to more than one discipline but that a conceptual model for a discipline is useful only to that discipline. 

A conceptual model consists of assumptions, beliefs and values, and major units.

This article will delve into the key concepts of Evelyn Adam’s Nursing Theory of Goal Attainment and its implications for nursing practice.

Background of Evelyn Adam’s Nursing Theory of Goal Attainment

Evelyn Adam was a highly acclaimed nurse and nursing educator who devoted her career to advancing the nursing profession. She was particularly interested in the nursing process, and the role nursing played in helping patients achieve their goals. Her theory of goal attainment was first published in 1976 and has become a cornerstone of nursing practice.

Evelyn Adam’s theory,  “Conceptual Model  of Nursing” focuses on the development of models and theories on nursing, particularly the theories of Dorothy Johnson and Virginia  Henderson

Evelyn  Adam applied  Virginia  Henderson’s  14  Fundamental  Needs and definition of nursing to Dorothy Johnson’s “Behavioral System Model of Nursing” model in her book, “To Be a Nurse”.  Adam identified assumptions, beliefs, values, and major units through this. She described that for the client to maintain independence in the satisfaction of the 14 Fundamental  Needs,  the nurse’s goal is to advocate the fostering of efficient and effective behavioural functioning in the client to prevent illness.  The nurse should complement and supplement the client’s strengths, knowledge, and will. 

Evelyn Adam’s “Conceptual Model of Nursing” has 6 components:   

 Goal of the profession: The end the member of the profession strives to achieve. 

Beneficiary: A person or a group of people to who the professional directs their activities, like the client. 

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Role: This is the part that the professional plays. It is the societal function of the professional. 

Source of Difficulty: The probable origin of the client’s difficulty with which the professional is prepared to cope. 

Intervention: The focus or centre of the professional’s attention when intervening with a client. 

Consequences: The results of the professional’s effort to attain the ideal and limited goals 

THE METAPARADIGM OF EVELYN ADAM’S THEORY

Person – Based on Evelyn Adam’s “Conceptual Model of Nursing,” a person is defined as the beneficiaries, which are the people or a group of people to who the professional directs theirActivities.

By relating this to Virginia Henderson’s 14 Fundamental Needs to Dorothy Johnson’s “Behavioral System Model,” it states that for a person or patient to satisfy their independence to the 14 Fundamental Needs asserted in Henderson’s Theory, it needs Dorothy Johnson’s “Behavioral System Model,” whose goal is to advocate the fostering of efficient and effective behavioural functioning in the patient to prevent illness through nursing care.

Environment

In Evelyn Adam’s Theory, it states that to maintain the supportive environment conducive to health that was included in Henderson’s 14 Fundamental Needs, requires the application of Johnson’s “Behavioral System Model,” which affirms that all elements of the surroundings of the human system, including the interior stressors, should be taken into consideration.

Health

Based on Evelyn Adam’s Theory, health is defined as intervention, the focus or the centre of the professional’s attention, the moment they intervene with a client. 

In relation to Henderson and Johnson’s theories, health is the client’s independence to satisfy the 14 Fundamental Needs for good health to achieve, which are influenced by different aspects such as age, health, cultural background, or emotional imbalance. 

Thus, one’s health should be adjusted through nursing care, demonstrating the behavioural system to such an extent that efficient and effective adaptation will occur.

Nursing

Evelyn Adam’s theory defined nursing as a role to which the professional plays his/her part and societal function. 

It is also defined as a source of difficulty where the professional plays his/her part and societal function by preparing to cope with the probable origin of the client’s difficulty. By relating Virginia Henderson and Dorothy Johnson’s theories, Evelyn Adam defined nursing as a function that is to assist the individual in making them complete, whole, or independent in satisfying the 14 Fundamental Needs in which one specific assisting a nurse need to execute is to promote to the client the efficient and effective behavioural functioning to preserve the organization and integration of the patient’s behavior from demeanors that constitutes a threat to the physical or social health of the client. 

Key Concepts of Evelyn Adams Nursing Theory of Goal Attainment

The theory of goal attainment is based on the premise that patients have unique needs and goals and that the nursing process should be tailored to help each individual achieve those goals. The theory comprises four key concepts: the nursing process, goal attainment, the patient-nurse relationship, and the nursing intervention.

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Adam developed Virginia Henderson’s concepts (Nursing Need Theory) within Dorothy E. Johnson’s (Behavioural System’s Model) structure of a conceptual model. 

She describes the goal of nursing as maintaining or restoring the client’s independence in satisfying the 14 fundamental needs. Each need has a biological, physiological, and psychological aspect. 

The nurse complements and supplements the client’s strength, knowledge, and will.

APPLICATION OF THE THEORY

Nursing Practice  

  • This conceptual model guides nurses in using the nursing method and problem-solving.  
  • The nurse is a complementary-supplementary role and must satisfy the client’s independence in his/her needs.
  • The practitioner will first assess the client’s independence guided by the 14 fundamental needs. 
  • The nurse will care for the client by identifying the need and the source of difficulty and planning an intervention. After all of that, it will evaluate whether it satisfies the client’s objectives or not.
  • According to  Adam,  nurses aim to improve public health through client independence.

Nursing Research 

According to Adam, there are 12 questions from the conceptual model to develop research. The following are the 12 questions:   

  1. How can client independence be measured? 
  2. How can his degree of dependence be quantified? 
  3. What dependency problems are solved by what nursing interventions? 
  4. At what point must the intervention be continued if independence is to be promoted?
  5.  How can certain interventions be made more easily acceptable? 
  6. How can nurses determine how much intervention is enough? 
  7. What dependency problems are most often encountered among selected groups (cancer patients, the aged, the mentally confused)? 
  8. How do pain and anxiety affect independence? 
  9. How can linguistic barriers be overcome? 
  10. How can the nurse help certain ethnic or socioeconomic groups to be independent? 
  11. How can the nurse increase client participation in healthcare? 
  12. Is the conceptual model socially useful, significant, and congruent? 

Goal Attainment

According to Evelyn Adam, nursing aims to help patients achieve their goals. 

This requires a deep understanding of the patient’s needs and desires and an understanding of the nursing process and how to apply it to each case. 

Nursing aims to work collaboratively with patients to help them achieve their goals and provide them with the support and resources they need to succeed.

Patient-Nurse Relationship

The patient-nurse relationship is essential to Evelyn Adam’s theory. The nurse must establish a trusting relationship with the patient to help them achieve their goals effectively.

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 This requires active listening, empathy, and a deep understanding of the patient’s needs and goals. The nurse must also be able to communicate effectively with the patient and provide them with the support and resources they need to be successful.

Nursing Intervention

The final component of Evelyn Adam’s theory is nursing intervention. This refers to the actions taken by the nurse to help the patient achieve their goals. 

The nursing intervention may include educating the patient, providing resources, or helping the patient make necessary lifestyle changes.

 The goal of the nursing intervention is to help the patient achieve their goals as efficiently and effectively as possible.

Implications for Nursing Practice

Evelyn Adams Nursing Theory of Goal Attainment has far-reaching implications for nursing practice.

  • It provides a comprehensive framework for understanding the nursing process and guides nursing practice in helping patients achieve their goals. 
  • The theory emphasizes the importance of establishing a strong and trusting relationship with the patient and actively listening to their needs and goals. 
  • It also emphasizes the importance of understanding the nursing process, applying it to each case, and providing the patient with support. 

What is the conclusion of Evelyn Adam’s theory? She describes the goal of nursing as maintaining or restoring the client’s independence in satisfying the 14 fundamental needs. Each need has biological, physiological, and psychological aspects. The nurse complements and supplements the client’s strength, knowledge, and will.

What is the importance of a conceptual model for nursing Evelyn Adam?  A conceptual model specifies nursing’s focus of inquiry and may thus lead to the development of theories that will prove useful to nurses and other health professionals. 

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